Ellen Pompeo Honors Grey's Anatomy Co-Star After Devastating Character Death

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Ellen Pompeo honored her Grey's Anatomy co-star Giacomo Gianniotti with an Instagram post over the weekend.

If you watch Grey's Anatomy online, you know Gianniotti's Andrew DeLuca was killed off on the show's midseason premiere on Thursday.

"Thank you for showing up and being the consummate professional every time you walked on set," Pompeo wrote.

Another Surprise Guest  - Grey's Anatomy Season 17 Episode 4

"Grey’s is a master class in patience and in having to be present no matter how monotonous it may get," she added.

"You aced it. Now you get to go have some fun and apply all that skill!! I’m excited for your future... and remember wine and pasta with me will always be a part of it."

"Tuo amico per sempre," she wrote, alongside a photo of them on the beach.

Ellen Pompeo, Giacomo Gianniotti

Gianniotti responded by sharing the photo on his own Instagram page and writing a tribute to Pompeo.

"Although our friendship will be everlasting, this ride with you has been incredible and I will deeply miss sharing the screen with you," Giannotti wrote.

"Digging deep in scenes, fighting for truth, seeing how much you care about your character and the show after all these years. It’s been an honor."

"Deluca and Meredith won’t be seeing each other anymore, but Giacomo and Ellen will be having much more time for pasta and wine now. Well said." 

Sickly DeLuca  - Grey's Anatomy Season 17 Episode 7

He thanked Pompeo for "making this experience such a memorable one."

The tragic nature of DeLuca's death means that Meredith will take up after being intubated to learn that her lover has passed away.

Yes, they got to share some scenes on the beach, but it remains to be seen whether Meredith will know about them.

The good news is that Gianniotti is not done with the series. He is directing an upcoming episode, and the actor has opened up to Entertainment Tonight about possibly stepping in front of the camera again.

DeLuca's Crash - Tall  - Grey's Anatomy Season 16 Episode 21

"If you're a Grey's Anatomy fan, you know that we've lost so many people over the years, but no one ever truly dies, whether it's a dream or a flashback or a memory or a text message, we continue to keep all those characters we've lost alive in some way," Giannotti told the outlet.

"So it's not the last we'll hear of DeLuca. People are always kept alive in the hallways at Grey Sloan and they're talked about."

Grey's Anatomy continues Thursdays at 9/8c on ABC, but we could be in the midst of the final season.

Negotiations are underway to keep the series around, but it's possible Pompeo could want to move on.

DeLuca's Decline - Tall  - Grey's Anatomy Season 16 Episode 18

What are your thoughts on all of this?

Will you miss the character?

Hit the comments below.

Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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Grey's Anatomy Quotes

MEREDITH: "You don't get to call me a whore. When I met you, I thought I had found the person that I was going to spend the rest of my life with. I was done! All the boys and all the bars and all the obvious daddy issues, who cares? I was done. You left me. You chose Addison. I'm all glued back together now. I make no apologies for how I chose to repair what you broke. You don't get to call me a whore."
DEREK: "This thing with us is finished. It's over."
MEREDITH: "Finally."
DEREK: "Yeah, it's done."
MEREDITH: "It is done."

DEREK: "Where is she?"
RICHARD: "You had to be the cowboy..."
DEREK: "Where is she?!"
ADDISON: "Derek! Thank God, you're alive."
ADELE: "That is not the she he was asking for."